BUDDING young scientists hoping to become as famous one day as the likes of Charles Darwin and Isaac Newton, and children fascinated by the world we live in, won't want to miss an exciting Devon festival.
Back for the second time is Sidmouth Science Festival featuring a programme of talks, hands-on activities and fun events aimed at all age groups.
Taking place from Monday, October 14, to Sunday, October 20, the festival hub is Kennaway House but events will take place in several locations in Sidmouth and at the Norman Lockyer Observatory.
Most events are free and the highlights include a codebreaking workshop with Dr Mark Baldwin at Cellar Bar, Kennaway House, on Thursday, October 17 at 10am; an evening with the Met Office at the Norman Lockyer Observatory on Tuesday, October 15 at 7.30pm; hands-on science activities at the parish church on October 19 at 11am; gold panning with nearly real gold at The Large Hall, All Saints' Church Hall, on Saturday, October 19 at 11am; and activities and displays centred around geological sciences at Sidmouth Museum on the same day at 10am.
Fun events include a lifeboat and helicopter demonstration at Sidmouth town centre on Sunday, October 20 at 10am; and Fire and Rescue Service engines, fires and demonstrations in the car park at All Saints' Church Hall on Saturday, October 19.
The aim of the festival is to raise awareness of how science affects our everyday lives and our future, and to show how science is integrated with art, music, dance and drama.
It also strives to make people aware of how science and engineering play a part in what we take for granted now such as mobile phones and satellite television.
Dave Bramley, chair of Sidmouth Science Festival team, said: "With so many technical issues being faced by society such as GM crops, nuclear power, stem cell research and climate change, we believe that our communities will make better decisions if they have a deeper understanding of the underlying science and technology.
"We hope that this festival will awaken and further people's interest in science and technology and help to inform people of how science affects us all."
Sidmouth Science Festival is organised by the Vision Group for Sidmouth together with the Norman Lockyer Observatory. The first festival was held last year and was very successful.
During the festival the A3052 at Newton Poppleford to the west of Sidmouth will be closed for roadworks. Approach Sidmouth instead from the A30 and then either Ottery St Mary or Honiton.
For a full list of events taking place visit www.sidmouthsciencefestival.org